MODERN TIMES – Later years of the festival

Pat Cannon - Dancer from the USA

If 1972 was an early milestone, by 1982 the festival was flying high.  In 1982, the Eighth Marymass Folk Festival, the Residents’ line-up was particularly strong and included three artists who made up a solid foundation of laughter, fun and mischief. They were Danny Kyle, Tich Frier and, completing the loony-tunes trio was the ample figure of Mike Elliott. Two four-man bands were also on the Residents list. Firbolg from Ireland and The Bully Wee. Locals taking their place on the list were Valley Folk from Galston, Clare Robertson, Stephen Quigg and Bobby Rogerson. Completing the list of Residents that year were newcomers Pat Cannon & Dan O’Connell from the US of A. Pat was an Appalachian Clog Dancer, Irish Step Dancer, Tap Dancer and Country & Western Swing Dancer. She was also a Square Dance Caller as well as a Banjo and Guitar picker! Crumbs. Dan O’Connell played Fiddle and Guitar, Clog danced and called Square Dances. They went down a storm.

That was some line-up of Residents and it meant that top-of-the-bill artists had to go some. There was no disappointment. Rab Noakes, Artie & Cilla Trezise, Iain MacKintosh, Johnny Silvo, Alastair McDonald, Mike Elliott and The Battlefield Band all rose to the occasion. Great days. Happy memories.

The stories of the later years are still to be told and at 50 years the festival is still going strong.